System resets scale and reimagines future of robotic endoscopic surgery
Nashville-based medical device company Virtuoso Surgical, Inc. has unveiled its revolutionary robotic surgery system. Virtuoso’s patented technology reimagines endoscopic surgery in scale, function and cost.
“Virtuoso gives surgeons their hands back, equipping them to lift tissue, apply tension and maintain traction – in tight spaces within the body,” said S. Duke Herrell, III, MD, FACS, CEO, Co-Founder and Chief Medical Officer of Virtuoso Surgical. “These are groundbreaking maneuvers in endoscopic/endoluminal surgery that are not possible with today’s instruments.”
The unveiling of the product marks the end of the design stage for Virtuoso Surgical and progress in the regulatory phase. In September 2022, the company’s first public offering of common stock became effective after review by the United States Securities and Exchange Commission and the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority.
Virtuoso Surgical Co-Founder and President Robert J. Webster, III, PhD also co-founded the Vanderbilt Institute for Surgery and Engineering (VISE) with Dr. Duke Herrell. They developed the Virtuoso Surgical system with a design team helmed by COO and Lead Engineer Richard Hendrick, PhD. The system enables surgeons to use two hands to perform dexterous maneuvers deep within the body, at the tip of an endoscope. Company executives anticipate regulatory submission in 2024, pursuant of FDA approval for sale in the United States.
“Virtuoso Surgical was born to reimagine the possibilities of endoscopic surgery, and we are pleased to move closer to making this system widely available to U.S. physicians,” Robert J. Webster, III, PhD, said. “Easier to use, more nimble and more effective than existing instruments, it stands to drastically broaden the possibilities of rigid endoscopic surgery.”
The Virtuoso Surgical system includes two robotically controlled, needle-sized manipulators working from the tip of a rigid endoscope that is less than half the diameter of a U.S. dime. The scope itself is far smaller than current robotic endoscope hardware, and the manipulators are 1mm in diameter. Equipped with a camera, the endoscope comes with an array of manipulators depending on the procedure, including a grasper, spatula, snare, laser aiming manipulator and electrosurgical tools.
“Our team set out to bring the stability and dexterity of robotic surgery to the rigid endoscopy space, and we have achieved that with the Virtuoso Surgical system,” Richard Hendrick, PhD, said. “This innovation equips surgeons to operate as though their hands were inside the body, with the minimally invasive advantages of rigid endoscopy.”
The Virtuoso Surgical system has demonstrated feasibility in animal, cadaver and tissue model studies in surgeries for bladder cancer, uterine fibroids (among other intrauterine procedures), enlarged prostate (benign prostatic hyperplasia – BPH), central airway obstruction removal and endoscopic neurosurgery.
The technology can provide dexterity in any procedure where tools are delivered through rigid endoscopes, including in urology, gynecology, neurosurgery, interventional pulmonology, orthopedics, thoracic surgery, ear, nose and throat (ENT) and other sub-specialties.
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About Virtuoso Surgical
Virtuoso Surgical has developed a groundbreaking robotic surgery system that radically improves minimally invasive endoscopic surgery. The Virtuoso Surgical system features a pair of instrument delivery arms made of concentric nitinol tubes that mimic a surgeon’s hand motions to offer unprecedented control and dexterity to a full range of endoscopic applications. The system uses patented technology developed by Virtuoso’s founders at Johns Hopkins University and Vanderbilt University with funding from the National Science Foundation and the National Institutes of Health. For additional information about Virtuoso Surgical and the initial public offering of common stock, visit www.virtuososurgical.net and www.virtuososurgical.net/investors. This device has not yet been approved by the FDA and is not for sale in the United States.